Some Tough Questions

1. Are we doing enough to make the world a better place?
2. Could we do more?
3. Should we do more?
4. Whose judgments and standards do we use in answering these questions.

I’ll start with the last question.   Letting the judgement of others determine the decisions I make in life did not work very well for me.   I have come to rely more on my own judgement.  I do seek advice and observe the success or failure of others.  In the end I use my own standards in judging myself.

1. Are we doing enough to make the world a better place?

Since I have not chosen to do more I must be judging myself as doing enough, otherwise I would do more.

I work part time, about four hours a week, at a shelter. I give part of my monthly budget to charity. I try to increase understanding in the world through dialogue with people from other cultures and belief systems, in the hope that we will come to understand each other better. This the primary reason I starting this blog.

I think if I really did not feel this was enough I would do more.

How do you decide when you have done enough, or at least enough for you to feel good about yourself?

2. Could we do more?

This is the easiest question to answer. No, I am not doing as much as I could. I spend time every day at the beach or the park. I could instead be spending this time helping at the shelter. I subscribe to the Major League Baseball cable TV channel. I could instead give this money to charity.

I doubt there are many people in the world who would say they do as much as they can, though clearly some do.

I meet a guy in New York who worked, lived, eat and spent his whole life, as far as I could tell, at a shelter for the homeless. I read recently about a doctor who devotes all his time to a free clinic, he spent his savings to build. Actually I read about people like this everyday. I have written some blog post about them. I would guess if you asked everyone one of them they would say they could do more.

I am interesting in examples of people you know, or know of, who spend their entire life making the world a better place.

3. Should we do more?

This is the most judgemental of all the questions. Should I give up my time at the beach and work at the shelter instead? Should I give up cable TV and donate this money to charity. If I really want to do the most I can to make the world a better place I should do both these things.

I do feel good about myself, so this motivates me to not want to change. I also sometimes do feel guilty when I am laying in the sun at the beach and realize I could be working at the shelter instead. This tells me that I know I should be doing more.

I have no good answer to this question. The best a can say is that I do keep asking my self these question and sometimes this does motivate me to do more.